Orechiette with Sausage, Beans and Mascarpone

I can't believe it took me so long to find such a delicious recipe. Contrary to popular belief, I really don't serve a pasta dish more than once a week (and honestly, I'm trying to cut back to pasta once every other week). I've been focusing on less carb-heavy dishes and more recipes that include fresh vegetables and lean meats. However, this recipe of Giada's just seemed too tasty to pass up. I thought I had experimented with every type of pasta known to man, but as I was making this recipe it occurred to me that I had never used orechiette before. Let me tell you, I absolutely loved it. If this dish wasn't so unhealthy, I would find an excuse-any excuse, really-to make it again next week. The only thing I changed was the sausage. I'm really not a fan of turkey sausage, so I purchased sweet Italian sausage from our local Italian grocery/deli. I highly recommend this. Simple, satisfying, and delicious. Enjoy!
Source: Food Network


  • 1 pound orechiette pasta
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 pound turkey sausage, casing removed
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 (15-ounce) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano leaves
  • 1/2 cup mascarpone cheese
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook until tender but still firm to the bite, stirring occasionally, about 8 to 10 minutes. Drain pasta reserving 1 cup of the cooking liquid.

2. In a large, heavy skillet warm the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the sausage and onions. Using a wooden spoon break up the sausage into bite-sized pieces as it browns.
3. Continue cooking until the sausage is golden and the onions are tender. Add the beans and oregano cook for 2 more minutes.
4. Add the cup of pasta cooking liquid and stir, scrapping up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan.
5. Add the mascarpone cheese and stir until it dissolved into a light sauce.
6. Add the salt, pepper, and hot pasta.
7. Stir until coated and serve.


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